By Jason Elmquist
STILLWATER, Okla. —
Markel Brown is bringing another level to his game in the heart of the Big 12 Conference season that will help elevate the Oklahoma State squad.
While Brown is still averaging nearly 15 points per game — which leads the Cowboy team — he is also starting to see an increase in assists. Though he is averaging just 2.3 assists per game, he has recorded at least four assists in the past three games.
“I think it’s important for him and it’s important for all of our players to get assists from everybody,” OSU coach Travis Ford said. “We’ve got to be able to share the basketball. We’ve got to try to reach our assist goal every game and we’ve done it a few games, but we’ve got to get everybody involved in this category.
“It’s great to get it from him. He’s our leading scorer and we get some assists from him it’s pretty good because we know we’re getting everybody involved.”
Last season Brown got some experience playing the point guard position, something he has attributed to his improved court vision.
“He gained some extremely valuable experience at point guard last year,” Ford said. “That’s good for any player, not everybody gets to experiment like that. But I think it’s made his game much more well-rounded. And I think his mindset is a little different since he played that position.
“I really like the flow he’s playing in, he’s making other players better, but he’s also a guy we need to have shoot the basketball.”
The junior guard said there is an importance to him finding more ways to collect assists.
“It’s important to this team, it’s important to this offense to kind of get everyone in the lineup going offensively,” Brown said. “You can’t just go out and have one guy scoring all the points. You’ve got to get everybody involved.”
In the first half of Saturday’s game against West Virginia, it was Brown who got the offense going. Not only did he score 9 points, but had four of his game-high five assists come in the opening half.
“When you can score the ball at times, it opens up the lanes for other players on your team and they’ve been doing a good job of stepping up and making shots,” Brown said.
The Cowboys return to action Wednesday for a contest against Iowa State at Gallagher-Iba Arena.